BRIDGING THE CULTURE GAP: ONE OUTSIDER’S COLLABORATION WITH THE TOHONO O’ODHAM NATION
The Society of Southwestern Author’s January 16, 2011 Forum Presentation by Robert L. Hunton
Whether it’s fiction or memior, historical non-fiction or educational essay, all good writing requires a variety of research strategies. Does your writing research include the critical element of personal contact? Have you gotten the word “from the horse’s mouth”? And even if you have, do you know what to do with it?
Robert L. Hunton, author of THE BORDERLANDS TRILOGY and the debut novel in that series for young readers, GIFT OF THE DESERT DOG, likes to think of it as collaboration. In order to get the very best response possible from a contact, the author says, “meet on a level playing field, work hard to establish mutual respect, create a comfort zone for your exchange, and recognize your source’s contribution as credible and of value, even if you choose not to use the material acquired in your finished product.”
Robert often draws his material from a subject he knows well; Native American culture. For thirty-two years he taught middle school students about Blackfoot winter counts, the sun dance of the Mandan, the ‘trail of tears’ of the Cherokee, and the struggle of the Abenaki people of Vermon and Quebec to achieve tribal recognition with the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington. The impact of his work is still being felt in curriculum and programs offered to students in his old school district, at country and state levels in Vermont.
Forums are held at Four Points Sheraton (Speedway and Campbell Tucson, Arizona), 11:30- 2 p.m., third Sunday of the Month
Please R.S.V.P. by Wednesday before Forum
250-955-9382 or forums @ ssa-az-org
$25 paid at the door includes lunch and Speaker
(No Credit Cards- processing fees are too high)
Taken from THE WRITE WORD, the newsletter of The Society of Southwestern Authors Vol. 39. No. 6 Dec. 2010-Jan. 2011